Suffolk/ Norfolk: Wikileaks founder Assange speaks from mansion base

WIKILEAKS founder Julian Assange has today claimed the investigation he is facing could be “illegal” as he spoke from outside his base on the Suffolk, Norfolk border.

Speaking on his first day under house arrest, the 39-year-old Australian said he had not been provided with any evidence relating to claims he sexually assaulted two women.

He was released from prison yesterday after a judge ruled he should be freed ahead of Swedish extradition proceedings in the new year.

Bail conditions require Assange to remain in the UK at Ellingham Hall, near Bungay, owned by Vaughan Smith, founder of the London’s Frontline club.

Assange arrived at the mansion shortly before 10pm yesterday.

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He is required to report to the police station in Beccles everyday between 3pm and 5pm.

After emerging from the High Court in London yesterday, Assange had vowed to “continue his work and protest his innocence”.

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Speaking from the grounds of the mansion, he claimed certain institutions were “engaged in what appears to be, certainly a secret investigation, but appears also to be an illegal investigation.

“We can see that by how certain people who are allegedly affiliated with us were contained at the US border and had their computers seized, and so on.”

Assange added: “I would say that there is a very aggressive investigation, that a lot of face has been lost by some people, and some people have careers to make by pursuing famous cases, but that is actually something that needs monitoring.

“We’ve seen the Swedish government, let’s not say the government, a Swedish prosecutor in these representations to the British Government and British courts said he needed not to provide a single shred of evidence.”

Mr Smith said Assange had previously visited the house and was a good friend.

He said he was convinced the Australian was not guilty of the charges against him and was allowing him to stay at his home as “an act of principle”.

Mr Smith explained: “I knew Julian well and obviously it’s a very contentious matter and I love journalism.

“I felt it was important to make a stand and I was very concerned that Julian received justice and I wanted to express my support.”

He said he hadn’t extended security at the property in light of his new guest.

“One’s obviously conscious that there have been some very shrill statement urging people to kill Julian Assange which I think is very irresponsible.

“But we can’t live in fear, I’m not prepared not to offer bail simply on some ungrounded fear for security.

“If the police fear there is a real threat of that I’m sure they will do what is necessary to protect me.”

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